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Shmuel Gerber

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Everything posted by Shmuel Gerber

  1. Shmuel Gerber

    Discipline and Removal

    Because Mr. E (unlike Mr. X, whose name is Mr. D) is just sitting there quietly, minding his own business and would surely leave if anyone asked him to. It would be a shame if the police executed his removal, or any other part of him.
  2. Shmuel Gerber

    Discipline and Removal

    Hmm, I would definitely advise against this wording.
  3. Shmuel Gerber

    Discipline and Removal

    You're answering the question but without any supporting rule or reason (other than your "no vacuum" rule). Also, announcing one's intention is not the same thing as seeking permission, which is what the chair would be doing by saying "If there is no objection . . . ." RONR (pp. 648-49) says, "If a person—whether a member of the assembly or not—refuses to obey the order of proper authority to leave the hall during a meeting, the chair should take necessary measures to see that the order is enforced, but should be guided by a judicious appraisal of the situation. The chair can appoint a committee to escort the offender to the door, or the sergeant-at-arms—if there is one—can be asked to do this. If those who are assigned that task are unable to persuade the offender to leave, it is usually preferable that he be removed by police—who may, however, be reluctant to intervene unless representatives of the organization are prepared to press charges." I agree with Mr. Martin that this means the chair can call the police, if he or she deems it necessary to enforce the removal order, without seeking the approval of the assembly.
  4. Shmuel Gerber

    Discipline and Removal

    Since you're having trouble figuring out what his real name is, just go ahead and called him Mr. X. Unless, of course, the meeting is held in a vacuum.
  5. Shmuel Gerber

    Discipline and Removal

    It depends. Is this meeting taking place at a Starbucks?
  6. Shmuel Gerber

    Voting Between 3 Options

    Your suggestion was that Budget Resolution B be moved as a substitute for Budget Resolution A. If this motion is adopted, the pending motion will consist entirely of the substitute; there is no inserted paragraph within a larger resolution. I think you are being confused by the statement "the resolution now pending is in the position of a paragraph that has been inserted." That text on page 161, which explains the procedure of the example, is alluding to the actual rule on page 155 which states: "After a paragraph, section, or version of a resolution has been substituted for another, the substituted paragraph or resolution cannot be amended except by adding something that does not modify the paragraph's existing content—as is true of any paragraph that has been inserted." (RONR, p. 155, ll. 22-26) This should be read as follows: "After a paragraph, section, or version of a resolution has been substituted for another, the substituted paragraph [or section] or resolution cannot be amended except by adding something that does not modify the paragraph's [its] existing content—as is true of any paragraph [or set of paragraphs or sections] that has been inserted."
  7. Shmuel Gerber

    Voting Between 3 Options

    No, he didn't say that. But what does that have to do with the budget for tea in China?
  8. Shmuel Gerber

    Good cheatsheets

    You should probably be worrying more about the other half. A little learning is a dangerous thing. Well, it's possible that the worse one's initial experience, the more motivation there is to actually read the rule book, but I still wouldn't recommend purposely making the meeting go badly. Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised In Brief has some quick-reference material in the last few pages, so get everyone a copy of the book! (Also, make sure to be well rested before the meeting instead of, say, posting to the Robert's Rules forum at all hours of the night.) But seriously, I think that the manner in which the chair conducts the meeting usually will make a much bigger difference to the members' perceptions than any of their misconceptions about, or ignorance of, the rules of order. Once they see that you know what you're doing, the meeting will go fine. (Probably.)
  9. Shmuel Gerber

    Latest Edition

    You must be thinking of the 10th edition.
  10. Shmuel Gerber

    Latest Edition

    The latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised is the 11th edition, which was published in September 2011. There are some later printings that may show a different date, but they differ only with respect to the copyright page and a very small number of corrections to typographical errors.
  11. It's not begging the question, but rather stating the obvious. This meeting is not properly called because it is not properly called. First of all, the assembly in question is an executive board, which I assume is subordinate to the membership. The fact that all members of the executive board choose to ignore the bylaws does not mean that "no one objects." Second, the assembly cannot determine anything, because there is no regular or properly called meeting at which that determination is taking place. A claim that the plain language of the bylaws doesn't mean what it says does not create any "ambiguity," no matter how many people make the claim. You are not talking about what the rule actually means, but rather why you think it shouldn't apply in this situation. However, that is not a proper method of bylaws interpretation, except as applied to rules that are in the nature of rules of order. At best what you have is a legal or practical argument as to why a certain provision of the bylaws should not invalidate action taken because no one's rights have been violated. While this may be a reasonable argument for why the actions should be acceptable to the society, it is not a reasonable argument for saying that the bylaws have been complied with and that an actual meeting of the board took place.
  12. The way I read this provision, I think it means that each month's meeting ("the meeting") may be changed to be held in conjunction with an event on a day of that same month that is not the second Tuesday. Or, even if the meeting doesn't have to be held in the same calendar month, I think it would at least have to be held before the regular day of the next month's meeting. In any event, I don't think it means that the June meeting can be held in August.
  13. Well, one problem I have with this reasoning is that it presumes that there exists some ideal knowledge about whether or not a quorum was "really" present, and that the later assembly is in a better position to access this knowledge and to declare that its own determination of the matter is more correct than the previous assembly's "erroneous" determination. I don't see any obvious reason why this should be so.
  14. I was beginning to be afraid that my opinion earlier in this thread, which does not agree with Dan Honemann's opinion stated here, came about because I had somehow forgotten an even earlier discussion about this, thereby inadvertently contradicting my own past opinion. Unfortunately, I can't guarantee that that isn't what's happened, but it seems that, in fact, Dan also expressed the opposite opinion at one time: https://robertsrules.forumflash.com/topic/14317-continuing-breach-no-committees-i-promise/
  15. George, I think that is the somewhat more interesting question here. I tend to agree with J. J. that in the opposite case -- when it was ruled that a quorum was present -- additional proof can still be brought at a later meeting to show that it actually wasn't, because the point of order is that action was taken in violation of a rule protecting the rights of absentees.
  16. I don't see how a ruling relating to action taken earlier at a meeting is necessarily "related to . . . the conduct of the meeting while it remains without a quorum," since the whole question is whether or not there was indeed a lack of a quorum at the earlier time, and has nothing to do with the conduct of the meeting at this point. However, the text on page 349, lines 21-28, gives no indication at all that such a ruling cannot be made at the time it is determined that no quorum is present, and I think that most readers would infer no such restriction.
  17. I don't think the fact that the decision was made at inquorate meeting is relevant to the question of whether the point of order can be raised again at a later meeting. If it is correct, as stated in the answers to the other topic, that a point of order regarding the loss of a quorum can, during that same absence of a quorum, be applied retrospectively to action taken earlier at the same meeting, then that decision was properly made by the assembly. Let's say that at the April meeting, a standing rule to prohibit the endorsement of any political candidates was declared adopted. Shortly thereafter, a point of order is raised that a quorum is no longer present -- and was not present at the time of the standing rule's adoption. No one disputes that a quorum is no longer present, and upon proof that is clear and convincing to the chair and the remaining members, the chair determines that indeed no quorum was present at the earlier time, and he rules that the point is well taken and that the main motion to adopt the standing rule is null and void. At the May meeting, a motion is made to endorse candidate X. Do you think a member can then raise the point of order that this motion is out of order because the standing rule is actually in force, even though it was previously ruled null and void ? On what grounds should this point of order be considered as timely made and well-taken?
  18. Shmuel Gerber


    Not in the case of bylaws. The bylaws should not be amended in such a way that they contain internal contradictions, but an amendment to the bylaws cannot be ruled out of order on the basis that it contains a contradiction. Getting back to a question that is not specific to these bylaws: I disagree with the statement that an amendment to the bylaws cannot be ruled out of order on the basis that it contains a contradiction. Any motion that contains no rational proposition is out of order, and amending the bylaws so as to make them contradict themselves is not a rational proposition.
  19. Shmuel Gerber

    Adoption or Acceptance of Reports

    For the future, please get the right book (Robert's Rules of Order Newly Revised, 11th edition) and read pages 504-510. Correct. The report should not be "accepted" unless the assembly wishes to endorse the entire report as its own statement, and in that case it would be better to "adopt" the report, which is what "accept" actually means. Members can ask factual questions that are reasonably related to the business currently before the board, but in a large board, comments are not in order unless they promptly lead to a motion or the board has granted permission to have an informal discussion of the subject. (See RONR, 11th ed., pp. 34-35 and 395-396. For the rules in a small board, see pp. 487-488. The auditors' report is the only type of report that needs to be accepted. The secretary's primary report is the minutes of the previous meeting, and minutes are approved without a motion (by the chair's asking for corrections and declaring the minutes approved when there are no further corrections). Other reports are disposed of according to their nature, as described in the section you referred to, and in general do not involve a motion to "accept."